• Concrete dividers and plastic piping being moved to Wisconsin
Warren, Ill. — March 6, a crane began removing concrete panels from the site of the megadairy near Nora, Ill. The panels were used to retain the 26,000 tons of silage that had been stored at that incomplete facility. Over a period of two to three days, about 20 flatbed trucks left the facility and were seen headed into Wisconsin, most probably to the Darlington Ridge Dairy that has connections to A.J. Bos, the investor in the Nora megadairy.
March 23 and 24, more trucks were seen heading north from the facility, loaded up with large plastic drain pipes that have been stored on the site since construction stopped in October 2008.
The megadairy is in front of the Illinois Pollution Control Board (IPCB), challenging a $250,000 fine from the Illinois Attorney General for their October 2010 discharge of purple leachate into a tributary to the Apple River. The next conference call is scheduled for late April.
The megadairy is also in the middle of a dye tracing investigation requested by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, although no progress appears to have been made on that project for months.
In September 2011, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency rejected a 401 permit that the dairy will need to construct one of the two 14-acre manure ponds planned for the site.
Once the balance of the pipe is removed, all that will remain of the facility are some partially-dug manure ponds, concrete slabs for some barns, and the incomplete walls for the milking parlor and front office.
Over half of the original acreage purchased by A.J. Bos has been sold to several local grain farmers, although the sale included a 20-year easement to allow for spreading of manure from the megadairy should it be completed.
When the barns were disassembled last year, Donald Manning, the lawyer for the megadairy, said the facility was still viable, but current activity appears to prove otherwise.
For more information about HOMES and to help support its cause, visit www.StopTheMegaDairy.org.
HOMES (Helping Others Maintain Environmental Standards) is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, pro-agriculture group of farmers and citizens dedicated to protecting family farms, rural communities, human health, and the environment by promoting sustainable agriculture and conserving natural resources.
For more information, contact Matthew Alschuler at (815) 745-2500 or (312) 969-6288.
From the April 4-10, 2012, issue